back bounded-next cafe calendar-large calendar cart close coat-check collapse donate download elevators expand explore filter grid-view hamburger heart hours join link list-view location mail more next nursing-room phone print programs ramp restrooms right-arrow search share shop thumbs-down thumbs-up tickets up toilet heart-filled zoom Skip to Content


African Art

Search and Share Tools


Artwork Details


Aduma Artist, Gabon


Late nineteenth–early twentieth century


Wood and paint

Accession #



10 1/2 inches


Currently Not on View


With its smooth, dark tones, the flat plane of this mask’s face contrasts dramatically with the curved dome of its forehead, highlighted in red and white. Broad perpendicular planes outline the mask’s face, nose, and brow, creating sharp angles at every edge. Aduma masks first entered European collections toward the end of the nineteenth century. Their ingenious reduction of human anatomy to geometric forms was prescient, auguring the artistic innovations of European modernism. Aduma masks are relatively rare in museum and private collections and little is known about their original functions, apart from the suggestion that they once performed during initiation ceremonies.


Fred and Rita Richman Collection

Welcome back! The Museum is now open to the public.
Reserve your TIMED TICKETS now!